Man, this was an unexpected and wildly entertaining Uber drive to the San Diego airport. After about 5 minutes, he launched right into it. I spent the whole time trying to steer him toward a rational argument that I could actually understand. It never happened. This happened instead.
I have come away thinking that certain religious people are so brainwashed that they are incapable if even hearing a rational argument to the contrary. It’s like the critical thinking part of their brain is completely turned off.
I respect that people should worship however they want. But when they preach, I think they should be better listeners and pay more attention to their audience.
Below is my recount of the conversation based on memory.
Al (Uber Driver): That would spread the gospel in that nation of Israel, but because they turned and did not recognize the Messiah, they continued in their evil ways, he has put them aside for a period of time, but he always has a remnant of believers as he says to Elijah, I have 7,000. There’s always been a remnant of Jewish believers that have faith in Yeshua and his words. Until the fullness of the Gentiles comes in, in the end, then all Israel will be saved. The Gentiles are to make the Jews jealous for their own God.
Me: Here’s an important question in my opinion. I think in order to have the conversation that we’re having, talking about the Scriptures is really cool, but you’re using Scriptures to-
Al (Uber Driver): I’m using the Hebrew.
Me: You’re using things that were written thousands of years ago as your arguments. What I’m asking for is something outside of Scriptures, something that’s more recent or some kind of evidence that-
Al (Uber Driver): The Jews always look for signs and wonders, is what they ask. Jesus did all the miracles and everything and they still don’t.
Me: We don’t know that. That was 2,000 years ago. The most recent Scripture that they found was 300 years after that.
Al (Uber Driver): My friend has 1 BC papyra with Isaiah on it. My friend has the world’s largest-
Me: The stories of Jesus were written down probably 50-100 years after he died, at a time that they didn’t even know that the world was round and what caused disease or what caused lightning and thunder and didn’t know what stars were. We’re expecting these people to have recorded properly-
Al (Uber Driver): They were eye witnesses and they were all Jewish.
Me: You don’t know that.
Al (Uber Driver): It says that in Scriptures.
Me: That was 2,000 years ago. Why don’t you trust the Egyptian books from 2,000 years ago. They have a totally different story.
Al (Uber Driver): They worshiped a pagan God.
Me: How do you know that your Scripture is the right one.
Al (Uber Driver): Because my faith, I believe in the Holy Spirit.
Me: Why did you pick faith in that religion versus another one?
Al (Uber Driver): It’s not a religion.
Me: Whatever you want to call it, why did you pick it to have faith in it?
Al (Uber Driver): I don’t use religion or religious because those people don’t know Yeshua as their own-
Me: I hear you. You want to call it faith?
Al (Uber Driver): Everything points, Judaism, Catholicism, Hinduism, Mormonism, all these isms point to one thing, that you can be saved by your works. Even the Muslims, you ask any Muslim, I have Muslims. I said how are you going to enter in the Kingdom of God which is called [inaudible 00:02:54]? From my good works outweigh my bad works. A true Biblical Christianity is based on only one thing and it’s based on faith alone.
Me: Right. Help me understand how you chose this-
Al (Uber Driver): I didn’t choose it. God chose me before the foundation of the world.
Me: How do you know?
Al (Uber Driver): Because his Spirit lives in me. That’s my faith. That’s my faith. The Spirit of the living God is in me. As he places that Spirit in you-
Me: How do you know the Spirit’s in you?
Al (Uber Driver): Because his Spirit bears witness with mine that I am the sons of the living God.
Me: How do you know that?
Al (Uber Driver): Because the Scriptures tell me and my spirit inside, that I have a future and my future is eternal.
Me: Is it a feeling? Do you feel the Spirit?
Al (Uber Driver): It’s not a feeling. It’s the Spirit in me convicts me. It tells me, it teaches me.
Me: You feel like there’s a Spirit inside of you.
Al (Uber Driver): The Spirit of the living God.
Me: The Spirit of the living God is inside of you.
Al (Uber Driver): Yes.
Me: Okay. I’m asking how you know that.
Al (Uber Driver): That Spirit gives me faith, that Yeshua Ha-Mashiach was the Mashiach, the anointed one, the lamb that was slain before the foundation of the world that we could be holy and blameless. All the sacrifices in the Old Testament could only do one thing. They could cover the sins of the people but they could never take away sin. Abraham, before he was circumcised, because he’s the father of the Gentiles, too, was by faith he was reckoned as righteous before a Holy God.
Me: Right. Let’s stick to the present. We don’t know. I don’t know.
Al (Uber Driver): If you don’t believe the authority of the Scriptures, the Scriptures overwhelmingly, all the ones that are in the canon, point to the Savior. The old testament-
Me: It’s not that I don’t believe the Scriptures. It is, but it’s because-
Al (Uber Driver): The only reason that I believe the Scriptures is because the Holy Spirit-
Me: How would we go about confirming … How can we detect that the Holy Spirit’s really in you and that it’s not just in your head?
Al (Uber Driver): The fruit of the Spirit is love, peace, joy. How can I love? I always have had a love for the Jewish people. God put that in my heart and now it becomes more evident. How can I love my enemy if I don’t have the spirit of God living in me? My nature by birth is evil. It’s corrupt, it’s separated from the love of God. Unless the Holy Spirit convicts you of your sin and it draws you and you repent and you’re sealed with the Holy Spirit God places his Spirit in you to live with you, that’s what David cried when he sinned.
In the Old Testament the Holy Spirit came upon people, didn’t live in them until Christ died and then he said the Comforter would come but David said, Don’t take your Holy Spirit from me. Don’t take your Holy Spirit from me. I grievously sinned, please don’t. When the Spirit is in you, then your eyes are opened to the truth. You can make decisions that are pleasing to God. Before that, it says all your righteousnesses are filthy rags. Everything you do, because in our heart, the motive is by nature corrupt. That’s what happened, the pronouncement when Adam sinned. He was our judicial head. Messiah was the second man. He was the overcomer. I can only share with you the love I have because the Spirit’s in me. Normal man is not going to-
Me: How would we go about detecting that?
Al (Uber Driver): You have to first of all really read the Scriptures slowly and see what the Scriptures are saying. I would start in the Old Testament.
Me: I’ve read them.
Al (Uber Driver): I would ask for illumination by the Holy Spirit. I’ll pray that the Lord will pen your eyes to the gospel.
Me: I would love that.
Al (Uber Driver): I would love to sit down with you in the Scriptures and go through them.
Me: I read the Scriptures.
Al (Uber Driver): I read the Scriptures when I was young growing up 100 times. I went to Sunday School. I had people praying for me. I was a complete rebel but when God’s Spirit came and convicted me and said this is the day of salvation.
Me: Why isn’t God more explicit? Why thousands of years ago did he come out in human form and talk to us but now he doesn’t do that anymore?
Al (Uber Driver): God revealed himself through the second person of the triune Godhead, Jesus, Messiah. He came for one purpose.
Me: That was 2,000 years ago. Why doesn’t he come again and remind us?
Al (Uber Driver): It says he died once for all. That was the sacrifice that was accepted.
Me: If we’re all his children-
Al (Uber Driver): Why was the sacrifice accepted? Because he came as a human. He was virgin born. There was no seed of man to corrupt him. He lived a righteous holy life. He didn’t even start his rabbinical work until he was 30, like a rabbi and then he performed miracles. He preached I and the Father are one, and there’s salvation only through me. He came as the lamb slain before the foundation of the world that we could be holy and blameless. There had to be a sacrifice acceptable. All the sacrifices of the Old Testament only pointed to Yeshua because they could never take away the sins.
Me: That doesn’t answer the question. Why won’t God come back and make it clear?
Al (Uber Driver): He’s coming back. He’s coming back as the Judge.
Me: Why is he waiting so long? Why doesn’t he just do it today?
Al (Uber Driver): Until the fullness of the Gentiles come in and then he saves all Israel.
Me: Why does he do it that way? Why doesn’t he just save us now? He can do anything he wants. He’s God.
Al (Uber Driver): Before the foundation of the world he appointed people to salvation until all those come in through his permissive will, he allows Satan, who is the prince and the power of the sons at work in the disobedience, the one who’s the ruler of the servant, until-
Me: Why is he playing this game?
Al (Uber Driver): He’s not playing a game because he chose people before the foundation of the world.
Me: Wy would he do that? Why would he put us in the situation?
Al (Uber Driver): Because God is sovereign and he can do as he wants, he does as he pleases. He’s the beginning, the last, he is the I Am. He’s the only one.
Me: He doesn’t seem like somebody you’d want to love. He seems like he’s playing games with us.
Al (Uber Driver): Oh no, he’s sovereign in all his ways. God is not obligated to save anybody. The just end of man is death because of sin, but God in his gracious mercy-
Me: He doesn’t sound gracious to me. He’s letting all these people die and suffer.
Al (Uber Driver): Every man, no man should be saved because of sin. It separates them from a holy God, but because he decreed before the foundation of the world that he’d have a people holy and blameless in love, he allows this we think [inaudible 00:10:11] are bad until all his sheep come in. My sheep hear my voice and they come to me.
Until the fullness, you see right now, I’ll give you a great book on eschatology but what you see right now is the final consummation of the ages are quickly coming to be because Israel is finally back in the land as it says in the Old Testament in Isaiah and Jeremiah. I will bring my people back into the land from the 4 corners of the world, [inaudible 00:10:43], and they will come in unbelief. Their eyes will be blinded.
Right now, the gay capital of the world is Tel Aviv. It’s not San Francisco or New York and they’re shaking their fist at a holy God. They’re back in the land in unbelief. What the next event on the prophetic calender, as it says in Daniel is that they will sign a covenant of death. That covenant of death is a protection. It’s confirmed and it says in the Greek and the Hebrew, and it’s a strong covenant, they’ll be protected for 3.5 years and then 1,260 days Antichrist walks into the temple and desecrates the temple, demands worship, he goes after the Jews first.
Then he goes after the Jews that he [inaudible 00:11:32] as it says in Zechariah, 1/3 will be saved. They’ll run into hiding. Then he goes after the offspring of the Jew because the gospel’s from the Jew first and that’s the Goyim and the Gentiles and that’s the true believers and that’s the body of Christ, the church which is made up right now of Jew and Gentile. The Gentiles are being grafted into the Olive Tree. The Olive Tree is Israel. God has to fulfill his word because it says that God is trustworthy is faithful. You know when the Reformation occurred, right?
Me: Not sure.
Al (Uber Driver): Martin Luther and all that.
Me: Oh yeah.
Al (Uber Driver): They broke from the Catholic Church and declared that solo scriptura that salvation is by grace alone from faith alone in Christ alone or Yeshua. What happened was when that reformation occurred it was only a reformation that dealt with the salvivic work or the salvation. These writers that were influenced by Augustine, they were what they call amillenialists. Amillenial means that God is done with Israel.
Only the Jew and Gentile, the church are Christ. This caused great continued persecution for the Jew. Let’s put it aside, the Inquisition and all these other things. God miraculously with the Jewish people, particularly in Germany they were the bankers, the lawyers, the physicians, the gifted musicians, he protected them and made a remnant of believers. Now we’re at the end of the age and what happens is this. 2/3 of the Jews will be destroyed and go into everlasting hell, but 1/3 will be preserved by fire.
Me: How is that love? Where’s the love of sending 2/3?
Al (Uber Driver): That is love. The love is that he would save anybody. At the end there’s what’s called the sheep and goat judgement before God’s kingdom comes on earth which the Jewish people were asking when it came the first time is these Goyim will appear before Yeshua and they’ll say Lord, Lord, why do we [inaudible 00:13:52] my kingdom? Because you fed my sheet they will protect these Jewish people. There’s a highway to holiness, believe it or not, it says in the Old Testament, that these Jews will flee into parts of Egypt, Edom, and even Syria and they’ll be protected divinely by God.
When Yeshua comes again, there’s first the rapture of the church, Jews and Gentiles, but the Jews that remain, he comes again, he goes first to Basra where the 144,000, the first fruits, the 12 tribes, the virgin men are sealed. He comes on a 3 day journey back to the Mount of Olives and as he walks back, the Jews that were survived will join him on that journey. Then when they all get to the Mount of Olives, it says that the Jews person, the ones that survive, look on Messiah and they will wail tribe by tribe, person by person for Yeshua the one they’ve pierced. Everything in God’s plan is perfect because no man should be saved because of sin.
Me: Why would God make people that sin?
Al (Uber Driver): God didn’t make people that sin. Sin came through the rebellion of Satan.
Me: Didn’t everything come from God including Satan?
Al (Uber Driver): He created them with a free will.
Me: Do we truly have free will if God wants us to worship him?
Al (Uber Driver): No, we have a bondage of the will because of sin, but when the angels-
Me: What do you mean by sin?
Al (Uber Driver): Sin is anything that’s a front to God’s holy word.
Me: He created us in a way where we were highly likely to go against his word it sounds like?
Al (Uber Driver): They weren’t created that way. He created free will but that free will-
Me: He created free will that was likely to not listen to-
Al (Uber Driver): God in his foreknowledge and his omniscience knew that man would sin. That’s why he provides-
Me: He probably knows what’s going to happen in 100 years.
Al (Uber Driver): Of course he does. He allows it because of his permissive will in completing the plan that he established.
Me: Why does he have a plan? If he’s so powerful, why would we even be significant to him?
Al (Uber Driver): The angels that sinned with Satan, they have no chance at salvation. They are condemned.
Me: Why would he do that to them?
Al (Uber Driver): Because they went against a holy God.
Me: He created them. It’s his fault.
Al (Uber Driver): It’s not his fault. He created them.
Me: It is his fault. Everything that he created is his fault. If he’s all powerful he should have been able to foresee.
Al (Uber Driver): It’s not his fault. He created them blameless with free will but they aborted that free will by turning against him. It says in Isaiah that he wants to be like God. He wants to ascend to the heaven and I will be greater than God. That’s what happens. You’ll see here coing. It’s interesting that … I’d love to get together with you sometimes and go through this stuff.
Me: Yeah. I appreciate that. It’s not something that I want to do. I appreciate the gift, but I think you should give it to someone that’s going to be more receptive to this message.
Al (Uber Driver): Most Jewish people like yourself, they get so mad.
Me: I’m not mad. I think it’s an interesting conversation.
Al (Uber Driver): When they read the Scriptures, God opens their hearts and they see that they’re helpless, hopeless, lost before a holy God and there’s nothing they can do. Those that see that and understand that Messiah was a sacrifice, repent of their sins. The immediate things is they have a joy and they have an irresistible … When the Lord opened my eyes, my love for the Scriptures, I couldn’t stop reading the Scriptures day and night, which I-
Me: I got no ill will. I’m just to me it’s interesting.
Al (Uber Driver): There’s no ill will.
Me: I need rational arguments.
Al (Uber Driver): Look in here. That’ll give you some real rational arguments.
Me: Are you sure? I don’t want to take this from you, man. It looks like you’ve had it for a while.
Al (Uber Driver): I’ve got many of hose. I give them out to Jewish people in the car here all the time.
Me: Okay. As long as it’s-
Al (Uber Driver): This guy on Saturday, he goes, I never thought of it that way. Let me at least take a look at it.
Me: I read everything. I’m happy to read it.
Al (Uber Driver): If you really want to read, I have the way of salvation in there. The Scriptures are in the first 2-3 pages and you can go to those Scriptures and take a look at what it says. That really ties it together. I’m going to pray for you. I love you.
Me: I appreciate that.
Al (Uber Driver): I just appreciate you-
Me: I would like-
Al (Uber Driver): The Gospel is to the Jew first but we’re being grafted in. We’re the ones that should be thankful to the Jewish people for bringing the Scriptures to us.
Me: Thank you sir. It’s been a very interesting conversation.